He WAS Your Boyfriend

Dear Ladies,

While my last post was a hit amongst the ladies and many of us found ourselves relating to it on some level there were many men who were not excited about the gender bias it showed. Much the same as Ntozake Shange stated in her the foreword of her most recent release of For Colored Girls “Methinks the gentlemen didst protest too much. It’s a women’s trip, and the connection we can make through it, with each other and for each other, is to empower us all.” Nevertheless, at thy word: Here are 5 things Ladies should only try if they were merely dating but definitely not do if they were in a relationship:

1. Not Acknowledge His Birthday: I keep hearing this phrase tossed around about the Modern Woman and as much as I don’t love it I do acknowledge that we are a generation of blackberry-handling, briefcase-carrying, high heel-wearing, on-the-move women and we’re busy. So, if you only went on a couple dates I’m quite sure you did not create a calendar event in your blackberry for his birthday so naturally no one can expect you to remember it. If, however, you were in a relationship I imagine you carefully and painstakingly created a photo book of all your favorite memories, lovingly compiled with quotes and journaling about the year of good times you spent together. You likely made the midnight birthday call and this day was almost as important to you as it was to him. So, it’s clearly pretending and intentionally malicious if you don’t acknowledge his birthday.

2. Skipping the Annual Family Bar-be-que: Honey if you only went on a couple dates I’m quite sure you barely know about a family, much less anything annual they do together or for one another. Plus, it would be a little creepy if you did show up. But if you were in a relationship? You know good an well they go as a family every year to the Beach or the park or the neighborhood community center the second week in August and celebrate love, joy and happiness. You have probably been invited by his mother, his auntie, his nephew, his sister and possibly even him but the expectation is that even though you’re broken up you’re part of the family so of course you’ll be there. Make an appearance. Take a couple of girlfriends and make an afternoon of hanging out. There’s no reason to fall out of good graces with a family that you’ve spent the last couple of years around.

3. Ignoring His Phone Calls: As you know I am not a fan of ignoring in general but I know ex-couples do it to one another all the time so there is clearly a time, reason and place when people feel like that’s what they need to do.  If you only dated a few times and he’s still calling you can pretty much assume about what he’s calling for. Ignore him and ignore him again,you have more to offer than that. If, however, you were in a relationship and he’s calling you should be answering the phone. You may have to establish some guidelines about how often he calls or even why he calls but all the same, if he calls it’s tacky to just continually ignore him.

4. Telling him about your recent Speed Dating Encounter: If you only went on a couple dates and you for some reason happen to find yourself in a follow-up conversation, this is exactly the sort of thing you might tell him about. It’s funny, it creates an atmosphere of fun and it’s a clear way of saying there are no hard feelings after those two dates that just didn’t go any further. But if he was your man? He does not want to hear about you speed dating, internet dating, blind dating or any kind of dating you might be doing. It makes sense to an outsider that clearly you are going to go on dates again but consider him an insider and he may know that logically but he is not going to be up for hearing about it. Now or ever.

5. Treating him like one of your Homeboys: If this was just a quick fling or a friendship that you thought maybe could be taken further but it turns out it couldn’t then naturally he goes back to being one of your homeboys. No doubt about it. If you two were in a relationship, it will be a very long time, if ever before he will be one of your Homies and treating him as such makes him feel invalidated in the relationship. All the conversations in the world about “Let’s Still Be Friends” doesn’t actually make you friends. You trying to act like you suddenly are is only going to create more friction and animosity in the relationship. Just don’t do it.

Hope this helps Ladies!

Love Always,


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